5 Tips for When Managers Make Mistakes

June 1, 2015 by  


When an effective manager makes an ineffective decision, he/she must learn from that mistake and move forward. We are human so will make mistakes, they are opportunities to learn and must be treated as such!


Here are five good choices to help you get back up on the horse after a bad choice has been made:
1. Accept Responsibility
Don’t try to blame anyone else for your mistake. Effective leaders willingly accept personal responsibility with class. Team leaders, whose team members may have erred, still take responsibility for their team after they have examined what when wrong, how to fix it and how to avoid repeating it….they learned from that experience.
2. Apologize and Explain
Once you acknowledge the mistake, bad judgment, or poor choice, apologize and explain your actions. An explanation is not an excuse, but rather a setting forth of the series of events leading up to your sincere apology. It is important to admit your mistakes and to let everyone know how you are moving past the issue. People understand that you can’t change the past, so even if they are upset with you for a while, they will recognize your integrity and willingness to be accountable.
3. Take the Lessons Learned to Heart
Once you have rectified the error you made as best as possible, tread lightly and carefully when considering your next steps. The important thing to remember is what went wrong and what other choices you have to exercise in a future similar situation. Make the best choice possible and, if it also fails, explore other options to rectify the outcome. Again, these can be teaching moments for everyone involved.
4. Keep Going
Make the best of a bad situation and push forward. Put the bad decision in perspective in the context of the whole. Keep making good decisions, and ultimately people will forget the bad ones.
5. Focus on the Present
Learn from the past and don’t dwell on it. There’s nothing you can do about it now, so focus on the present and move on.
The only people who never make bad decisions are those who make no decisions at all. Every great event in human history involved someone taking a risk, and the bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. When you do make a mistake, handle it with dignity, take responsibility, and learn from what happened. Then, keep taking those calculated risks….that is how we gain new knowledge and make discoveries.

Remember, we would not have electricity, airplanes or the technological devices we have today if those inventors had not been curious and brave enough to overcome all their mistakes, learn from them and keep trying other approaches.

6 Principles of Millennial Management

November 15, 2014 by  

What do today’s young employees want?

If we’re designing recruiting programs and management systems based on their values and needs, how do we proceed?
What kind of work environments attracts, retains, and motivates Millennial co-workers?

Here are their six most frequent requests:

1. You be the leader. This generation has grown up with structure and supervision and with parents who were role models. The You be the parent TV commercials are right on, parents are too permissive and lauditory so expectations tend to be unrealistic.  That is also why they prefer to have more support when leaning new things, at least until they feel more confident in what they are doing.  Millennials are looking for leaders with honesty and integrity, that is their expectation.  It is not that they don’t want to be leaders themselves, it is just they would like to have some great role models to emulate first.

2.Challenge me. Millennials want learning opportunities.   They want to be assigned to projects from which they can learn.  A recent employee survey found that trying new things was the most popular activity for Millennials because they are looking for growth, development, and a career path with opportunities.

3.Let me work with friends. Millennials say they want to work with people they relate to. They like being friends with their co-workers.  Employers who provide for the social aspects of work will find those efforts well rewarded by this newest cohort.  Some companies are even interviewing and hiring groups of friends so that they can form their own work teams.

3.Let’s have fun. A little humor, a bit of silliness, even a little irreverence will make your work environment more attractive to this group of young people.

4.Respect me. Treat our ideas and our efforts respectfully, they ask, even though we haven’t been around a long time.  Their expectations are different from previous generations.

5.Be flexible. The busiest generation ever isn’t going to give up its activities just because of jobs. A rigid schedule is a sure-fire way to lose your Millennial employees as they thrive on and expect a good work/balance in their lives…not necessarily a bad thing.

This is our new employment pool so if we are going to be able to leverage their talents we need to be aware of their needs and expectations so that we can attract them to our businesses and keep them long enough for the benefits to kick in!  Ultimately this will be an education for both sides….they need to learn more about the “real world” and we need to be more flexible and understanding of their gifts and shortcomings.



6 Essential Qualities of a Successful Manager

November 18, 2013 by  

1. Be a great communicator.
Clear and concise communication is one of the most important managerial skills. As a manager you must be able to motivate, delegate, negotiate, persuade, analyze, and critique deals, tasks, and team members on a daily basis. Effective communication whether written, verbal, or through digital media are skills required of any manager today. The better your communication the more likely you and your organization will succeed.
2. Be energetic and enthusiastic.
Negative attitudes bring the entire team down. Managers with enthusiasm and an optimistic outlook will energize the entire team. Adopting a can-do attitude and implementing enthusiasm in the day-to-day interactions will encourage others to look for the positive in even the most challenging situations.
3. Exhibit competence in your area of expertise.
A successful manager must master their area of expertise. The best way to exhibit competence and mastery in your field is to challenge, inspire, and enable your team to successfully complete key goals and initiatives ahead of schedule, under budget, and with exceptional results. Model successful behavior and learn from other successful managers in your field.
4. Delegate effectively and efficiently.
Delegation is an often abused function of even the most seasoned veteran manager. Being able to push critical tasks on to other team members is not the answer to successful delegation. Instead, delegating to those most suited to the task, providing timely information and guidance, as well as consistently following up to ensure everyone understands the task at hand and the desired results are key to effective and efficient delegation.
5. Remain calm, cool, and collected regardless of the circumstances.
Obstacles will arise, unforeseen events will transpire, and Murphy’s Law tends to rule in spite of the most well thought out plans and objectives. When challenges arise handle them calmly and with authority. Identify the solutions and clearly define the ways to successfully navigate the obstacle course presenting itself. Reinforce your team’s ability to thrive in any circumstance by remaining composed and confident even if you are not entirely certain of exactly what needs to happen or when. In a clear-headed state the solutions will materialize and many perceived challenges will work themselves out without requiring major intervention or corrections.
6. Be your team‘s biggest cheerleader and coach.
Encourage your team throughout all stages of any project and offer coaching and guidance as needed during the process. A team is only as good as its leader and requires the manager to understand what is necessary to motivate the individuals to perform at their highest ability. In addition continually recognize and acknowledge the successes of your team. Encourage individuals to strive to improve on an ongoing basis. By leading and encouraging you will inspire individuals to improve their performance and the team’s in the process.

By incorporating these 6 guiding principles into your current management techniques you will be sure to actively engage those around you and improve results consistently. Though not always easily mastered these techniques are simple and proven. Start implementing them today and see how powerful each of them can be in your management objectives.

Millennials & the Business World

February 21, 2013 by  

Our new employment pool is mainly composed of the Millennials now so we need to understand their strengths & shortcomings so that we can leverage their talents to the benefit of all concerned.
Tech savvy
Goal Oriented
Positive Attitude
Like Structure
Collaborative Team Approach
Multiculturally Aware
Handle Change
Self Confident

Ignorant of Big Picture
Self Centered
Distaste for Menial Work
Lack Skills for Dealing with Difficult People
Lack Experience
Confident beyond Ability
Hide Behind Technology

How can we lead them effectively?

Communicate clearly their roles & responsibilities
Describe expectations
Provide structure
Give constructive feedback

Offer new experiences
Provide a Learning Culture
Offer job shadowing opportunities
Allow passion projects
Include them in important meetings

Navigate with direction & support
Design career maps
Define office hours
Avoid uncertainty, they are uncomfortable with that

Network & Mentor to offer them learning opportunities
Provide Lunch & learn sessions
Pair them up with a mentor (senior or peer)
Encourage the joining of Professional Groups
Encourage attendance at networking events

Engage & Excite by keeping things fun!
Challenge them!
Offer recognition for work done well
Try out new ideas & let them present them
Welcome their technical approaches
Allow for some flexibility

Collaborate…encourage team work
Let them see that they are part of the bigger picture
Encourage volunteer & social responsibility projects, & let them organize them
Encourage reverse mentoring with a senior person, perhaps in a technical area

Teach them skills….in particular Soft Skills
Business etiquette is necessary
Dealing with conflict
Leadership & Management skills
Weekly courses
Consider an on demand expert for them

Understanding these young people is a challenge worth facing!

For more information on Millennials please look at the workshop offered on this topic.